Getting a Kick Out of My Shoes
By Professional Organizer Lea Schneider
It’s been said shoes are jewelry for the feet.
If that’s so, then why would I want to get rid of any of them?
Sure I am a professional organizer (which means I am supposed to declutter everywhere I go,) but I am also a woman who appreciates a pretty pair of shoes. Some people think if they organize their closet or have a professional organizer in to work with them, they will need to get rid of their shoe collection. Not so!
So if you like shoes, as I do, then what you need to know is how to organize them. I tackled that in my new book “From Closet Clutter to Closet Control: Four Steps to Organizing Your Clothes,” available in print on Amazon.com, $10, or as an EBook at my website OrganizeRightNow.com, $7.75. The book covers what kinds of shoe organizers work…and don’t work.
But, before you think about what kind of organizers to put in your closet, here are some basic things to understand and steps to take:
- You don’t need ALL your shoes out at any one time. You aren’t wearing winter shoes, summer shoes, and dressy shoes and so forth all at the same time.
- Divide and conquer. Divide your shoes by first pulling out all your dressy or special occasion shoes. You definitely don’t want those sitting out on a shelf or shoe rack. Glitter, rhinestones, silk, satin and other dressy shoe materials get dusty and can’t be easily cleaned. This part of your shoe collection can be stored in containers and put away. Just pull out a pair as you use them.
- Next, pull out any shoes that have a special purpose. The women I organize with are active. I find shoes of all types from bowling to hiking, snow skiing to water shoes to nursing shoes or construction boots. Often these are worn occasionally. If that is the case with you, and you only use them occasionally, then those are shoes you can also put away in containers.
- Divide the remaining shoes by season. Either they are warm weather or cool weather shoes. You only need to have one or the other out for most of the year. By the time you reach for boots, it is time to put those sandals away. If you have tons of storage for shoes, place the current season shoes at eye level. Place the out of season shoes on low or high shelves or racks. If you are limited in shoe storage, then put the off-season shoes into containers that can be put away until the change of seasons. This doesn’t have to be in the closet. It could be under-the-bed storage boxes, a wicker trunk that serves as a side table in your room or even in a tub in the garage.
Back to the “jewelry for your feet” comment. Keep that in mind as you go through your shoes. If your “jewelry” is out-of-style, has never found the right outfit for it or hurts when you wear it, let it go.
Besides, there are always more where those came from!
About the Author
Lea Schneider, owner of Organize Right Now, is a professional organizer providing organizing and consulting for everything from piles of papers to closets to shoes! Her organizing advice has appeared in numerous places including The Washington Post, Family Circle, Woman’s Day, Better Homes and Gardens Kitchen + Bath Makeovers, ThisOldHouse.com and more. She is also the author of “Growing-Up Organized,” (Amazon.com, $14) and was the Grand Prize Winner for the Rolodex Office Makeover Challenge. Lea is a Golden Circle member of the National Association of Professional Organizers.